Political Notes: MACo Fundraising Circuit, Human Lawmakers, FOP Back Ball, Bidens Head to Md.

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The 2022 Association of Maryland Counties Summer Conference will be held this week in Ocean City. Stock.adobe.com photo by Christopher Boswell.

The annual summer conference of the Association of Maryland Counties begins Wednesday in Ocean City, and beyond the official events taking place at the Roland Powell Convention Center and the plethora of free receptions sponsored by political leaders, businesses lobby and special interest groups, there There are at least seven candidate and political committee fundraisers scheduled to coincide with the convention. They are:

A fundraiser Wednesday for Senate President Bill Ferguson (D-Baltimore City) from 4:30 to 6:30 pm at the Aloft Hotel. A fundraiser Wednesday for Baltimore County Executive Johnny Olszewski (D) 4:30-6:30pm at the Fontainebleau Hotel A fundraiser Wednesday for Harford County Executive Barry Glassman on Republican candidate for state intervention, 4:30-7:00pm at Seacrets A fundraiser Thursday 4:30-6:30pm for Democratic gubernatorial candidate Wes Moore at the Holiday Inn A fundraiser Friday 8-9 :30 am for the Senate Republican Caucus at Blu Crabhouse A Friday fundraiser for the House Republican Caucus 11:30 am to 1:30 pm at Harrison’s Harbor Watch A Friday fundraiser from 4 to 6 pm Speaker Adrienne Jones (D-Baltimore County) at the Aloft Hotel

MACo will also be a bit of a farewell tour for Gov. Larry Hogan (right), who has always been a popular figure at these Ocean City confabs. Traditionally, the governor’s address is the final event of the four-day conference on Saturday, but this year the late-morning Saturday time slot is reserved for a conversation with four of the six candidates for state office: From. Dan Cox (R- Frederick), the GOP candidate for governor; Glassman; From Brooke Lierman (D-Baltimore City), Glassman’s opponent in the general election for comptroller; and US Rep. Anthony Brown, the Democratic nominee for attorney general.

Moore, who will hold several events in Ocean City throughout the week, will not be at the forum, nor will former Anne Arundel County Councilman Michael Anthony Peroutka, the Republican candidate for attorney general.

But Hogan will still be in town. He’s hosting a “thank you” reception Wednesday evening, will speak at the convention Thursday morning, and also plans to stop by the Taste of Maryland event in the convention hall Thursday evening, the reception for cabinet members of governor on Friday. afternoon, and the crab festival on Friday evening. He also plans to walk the Ocean City Boardwalk on Thursday afternoon and has a series of events up and down the East Coast scheduled this week before and after he arrives in OC.

State Comptroller Peter Franchot (D), who is also leaving office in January after 16 years on the job, is scheduled to make at least one appearance in Ocean City this week, at the Taste of Maryland event Thursday.

Staff notes

Drew Vetter, who recently resigned as assistant administrative officer in Baltimore County government, has signed with Schwartz, Metz, Wise & Kauffman, PA, the Annapolis law and lobbying firm. He will join the firm on September 1.

Vetter served as Olszewski’s deputy chief administrative officer from 2018 until July 2022. In that role, Vetter was responsible for a portfolio that included policing and public safety, as well as economic development and use of the ground. He also served as the administration’s leader in labor negotiations and labor relations matters.

Previously, Vetter was the director of the Mayor’s Office of Criminal Justice in Baltimore City, the chief of staff and director of government affairs for the Baltimore Police Department, and the deputy legislative officer for former Gov. Martin O’Malley (D).

“Drew represented best-in-class service to the residents of Baltimore County, bringing an unwavering work ethic, sharp intellect and unflappable demeanor to his work every day,” Olszewski said.

In other personnel news, CareFirst BlueCross BlueShield, the largest not-for-profit health plan in the Mid-Atlantic, announced Tuesday that Lester Davis will come on board as vice president and chief of staff, reporting directly to the president and CEO , Brian D. Pieninck.

The healthcare giant said Davis will collaborate with CareFirst’s executive leadership team, guiding strategic initiatives, leading special projects and serving as an extension of the CEO’s office.

“As a proven leader with a strategic mind and a passion for making a positive impact, Lester has a drive that aligns directly with CareFirst’s culture of differentiation, and his unique skill set will advance our efforts to champion a more equitable healthcare system,” said Pieninck. “Lester will play a critical role in leading and expanding our shared efforts to transform healthcare with and for the people we serve.”

Davis most recently comes from SKDK, the national Democratic media firm, where he served as vice president of public affairs. Before that, he spent more than a decade in Baltimore city government, including as deputy chief of staff in the mayor’s office.

Animal lovers

The Humane Society Legislative Fund, the political advocacy organization for the protection of animals, released its 2022 Maryland Humane Scorecard on Tuesday. The scorecard ranks state lawmakers based on their votes for priority animal protection legislation during the 2022 General Assembly session.

This year, the General Assembly passed several animal rights reforms, including ending wildlife trafficking in the state, requiring shelter for dogs in extreme weather conditions, and banning cat skinning. Several lawmakers from both parties scored well on the group’s scorecard.

“The Maryland General Assembly continues to make great strides toward building a more humane society,” said Brad Pyle, policy director of the Humane Society Legislative Fund.

In all, 29 of the 47 senators, including one Republican, Baltimore County’s Chris West, earned perfect scores of 100 percent. And only one senator, Sen. Steve Hershey (R-Upper Shore), got 50%.

The situation was a little different in the Chamber. While 105 members got perfect scores, including 12 Republicans, some Republicans fared quite poorly. From. Robin Grammer of Baltimore County scored zero on the Humane Society report, and Del. Dan Cox, the GOP candidate for governor, was next lowest at 17 percent.

To the ball

Last week, we reported that several former Howard County law enforcement leaders from both Democratic and Republican administrations had backed former County Executive Allan Kittleman (R) in his bid to unseat the man who he was ousted four years ago by current County Executive Calvin Ball (D) .

In doing so, we overlooked that Ball had been endorsed in late June by the Howard County Police Officers Association Inc., members of the Fraternal Order of Police Lodge 21. Ball was part of a bipartisan list of 10 candidates the union endorsed at the time for state and local offices.

“These candidates support quality, honorable and effective policing,” the union said in a statement. “They stand with the men and women of the Howard County Police Department and we stand with them.”

Bidens will focus on Maryland

President Joe Biden and First Lady Jill Biden are scheduled to appear at a “grassroots event” to get out the vote in Montgomery County next week.

The Democratic National Committee is promoting the event, which will be held on Thursday.

The exact location and time of the event have not been announced, but a registration form indicates it will be held in the 20815 zip code, an area that includes Bethesda, Chevy Chase and part of Rock Creek Park in the east of Silver Spring.

“There’s a lot at stake in the upcoming election, and it’s imperative that we elect Democrats up and down the ballot in November. Join us and hear directly from Democratic leadership and special guests, and learn more about how you can do your part in electing Democrats in November,” the invitation states.

Danielle E. Gaines contributed to this report.

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